Drew Hendry MP
Covid 19 information
The Covid 19 pandemic is causing unprecedented challenges to business, families and to our public services. It is a deeply worrying time for all. If you have an urgent question that cannot be answered using the information on this page, please get in touch with me and I will do my best to find the information you need.
Send me a message using the link below or call my office on 01463 611 024. We are dealing with extremely high volumes of enquiries and I thank you in advance for your patience, should I not be able to get back to you as early as you and I would like.
Phase one: what are the changes?
The First Minister has outlined how we are to move into phase one of Scotland’s four phase route map out of lockdown.
I know that you will welcome this, but it is important to understand fully what the small changes to the lockdown rules are and for each of us to continue to follow those rules.
Throughout phase one, it remains vital to respect the guidance, to continue respecting the personal space of other people, and to keep in mind that things are not back to normal and that things should not feel like normal.
Below is a video of the First Minister’s statement. I strongly recommend watching it in full and reading the guidance which can be accessed on the Scottish Government website.
Although we have started on the path out of lockdown it is essential that you continue to stay at home as much as possible. Lockdown has been modified slightly, but it is by no means over. This virus hasn’t gone away and we must all take care to protect ourselves and our families.
Remember that social distancing must remain. Stay at least 2 metres away from people outside your household, continue to wash your hands regularly, and wear a face covering in shops and on public transport.
We are only able to take these small steps forward now because of your adherence to the rules. I do not underestimate the personal sacrifices you are making through lockdown and thank you for your efforts. If we all continue to stick to the rules, then hopefully we can look forward to moving towards phase two sooner rather than later.
From Thursday 28th May
Test and Protect is now in place across Scotland. This is Scotland’s way of putting into practice the ‘test, trace, isolate, support’ strategy. If you start showing any symptoms of coronavirus—that is a high temperature or fever, a new continuous cough, or a loss of, or change in sense of smell or taste— then you should visit the NHS Inform website to book a test immediately.
From Friday 29th May
Business and public services
- Most outdoor work can resume.
- The construction industry can begin site preparation.
- Garden centres and plant nurseries can reopen some of their services.
- Drive through food outlets are no longer being discouraged to remain closed.
- Non-essential shops, pubs, restaurants & cafes—except for takeaway—must remain closed.
- Household waste recycling centres can reopen from Monday. You can find details of Highland centres at https://www.highland.gov.uk/info/1054/rubbish_and_recycling
- Other business premises should remain closed unless they are providing essential goods and services.
- All businesses should continue to allow staff to work from home wherever possible.
Sport and recreation
- Some non-contact outdoor leisure activity will be allowed to restart, for example golf, tennis, bowls, and fishing.
- You can sit and sunbathe in parks & open areas.
- You can travel—preferably active travel such as cycling or walking—to a location near your local community for leisure & recreation. This should be no more than 5 miles from your home. You should stay within or close to local area and not use public transport unless absolutely necessary.
- You can meet with another household outdoors, for example in a park or a private garden. You should not be meeting multiple households at the same time and this should only be in small groups, the total number of people being no more than eight.
- You don’t have to pick just only one household to meet with during phase one, but you can only meet with one other household at a time and the strong advice is to limit this to one other household per day.
- You should continue to stay at least 2 metres away from others who are not members of your household and avoid touching the same hard surfaces. For example, if meeting for a barbecue, each household should have its own cutlery, plates, etc.
- If visiting another household it is vital that you don’t go indoors. Think practically—don’t visit another house if you think there’s a risk of you needing to enter their house to use their toilet for instance.
- Do not hug or touch people who are not part of your household. This is really difficult, but it is really crucial that social distancing remains in place at this time. Full guidance on this distancing is available on the Scottish Government’s website.
From Monday 1st June
Education and childcare
- Teachers and staff will be able to enter schools to prepare for the reopening of schools in August.
From Wednesday 3rd June
Education and childcare
- Childcare will be available for larger numbers of children who most require it, for example, vulnerable children and children of essential workers.
- Childminding services and fully outdoor nursery provision can take place, but there continue to be limits on the number of children which can be cared for.
Other changes during phase one
- Some key public services such as some respite care, children hearings and some key heath programmes will restart work.
Advice on Shielding
advice For Businesses
SUPPORT FOR BUSINESSES
New Business Grants
Other Useful Links For Businesses
advice For Self Employed
SUPPORT FOR SELF EMPLOYED
Scottish Welfare Fund
Time To Pay Service
Financial Support for Families
Latest Update On Welfare Support
The Scottish Government announced £350 million new Welfare and emergency funding to help support families and communities in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
– £70 million for a food fund to help older people and families who might not be able to rely on free school meals.
– £50 million for a well-being fund to help charities, homeless people and those in fuel poverty.
– £40 million for community fund to help fast-growing groups springing up to support people in need.
– £50 million to meet demand for council tax reduction and social security.
– £20 million for charity finances
Much of this funding with be made available through community projects, the third sector and the Highland Council. I will update this page as and when more information is available.
Job Retention Scheme
Highland Council Helpline
Scottish Welfare Fund
Statutory Sick Pay
Useful Links For Financial Advice and Support
Support for Families
Advice & Support Networks
Life as we know it has changed over the past few weeks and we don’t know how long it will be before family life gets back to normal. Hopefully the information below will give you some of the resources you need over the coming weeks and months. If not, please get in touch and I will do what I can to help.
Help In Your Community
Help in Your Community
There are several community groups and individuals offering to help people who are having to self-isolate. I also know many of you are looking out for neighbours and doing what you can to help – keep up this good work and remember to social distance as much as possible. If you are struggling to find the help you need getting essential items, and cannot find support on this page, please do get in touch.
Support in Grantown
Food & Supplies
Local Deliveries & Supermarket Updates
Local shops and businesses offering delivery services
The Health Shop, Inverness are still open and are offering free delivery of orders in the Inverness area, with a postal service available for further afield.
The STOREHOUSE are offering a home delivery service. Orders can be made online or by calling 01349 830038.
Swansons Food Wholesalers are offering fixed price mixed boxes starting from £30.
Inverness Taxis have teamed up with Williamson Food to offer delivery of food packs.
Ancarraig Lodges are offering free delivery within a 10 mile range of Inverness. Their food hampers start at £35.
Loch Ness Country House Hotel are offering a household essentials hamper at £25 and a food hamper at £95. Collection available from their car park or delivery at £5.
Inverness Auction Centre Limited are offering fresh food packs from £25. Collection and delivery available.
Graham’s Dairys Nairn are offering doorstep delivery of their products.
Ashers Bakery are offering home deliveries.
Pro Fish Services Ltd are offering home delivery on their pack